Evening Update Friday 28 August 2020

The President of the Provence Alpes Cote d'Azur region has said that all high school students in the region will receive a mask free of charge for the beginning of the school year. Renaud Muselier said that the mask would be washable 35 times. He said that school bus drivers would have an emergency supply of masks to give to those students who did not have one. Amongst other measures, he announced that several hundred hydroalcoholic gel dispensers would be installed in schools.

The Mayor of Cagnes-sur-Mer has asked the Prefect to include the municipality in the areas where wearing a mask is mandatory. Louis Negre said the request is being made because the Alpes Maritimes has been placed in the Red Zone for coronvirus, a development he described as "worrying".

Another major event on the Riviera has been cancelled because of the coronavirus. The Cannes Half Marathon was due to take place on September 20 after being rescheduled from March 1 but organizers have announced that this years edition will now not take place.

A police patrol was attacked in an ambush in Saint-Chamas in the Bouches-du-Rhone this morning. A concrete block was thrown from a height of 30 metres onto police patrolling an area in the commune to the north-west of Marseille. Authorities had received a hoax call reporting a crime in the area. One police officer suffered eye injuries in the attack.

The Prefect of the Bas-Rhin department in north-east France has announced that the wearing of masks will be compulsory in Strasbourg and in all municipalities of more than 10,000 inhabitants. The Prefect said that the measure will come into force tomorrow at 8 am and will be in place until at least 30 September.

Meanwhile, the prefecture in the Herault department has announced a prohibition on dancing in bars and all public places. The measure is in place until 15 September and covers outdoor as well as indoor spaces.

It's believed that thieves may have stolen several million euros after an armoured van was attacked in Lyon this morning. Witnesses say that several armed individuals in several vehicles attacked the van in the 7th arrondissement at about 9am. Nobody was injured in the incident.

A police officer has been taken to hospital after being dragged over 500 metres by a car in Nancy near to the German border. Officers were called to an incident in the early hours of this morning which resulted in a car chase. An officer managed to open the door of a suspect's vehicle but was dragged along the road. His injuries aren't believed to be serious.

 

BUSINESS

Gatwick Airport has said that passanger numbers declined by 14.7 million in the first half of this year. The airport remained open throughout the pandemic, but it said that all revenue streams were impacted and the collapse in passenger demand led to a 61.3% fall in revenue and a £321m loss.  Earlier this week it announced plans to cut 600 jobs.

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has resigned because of health issues. He's expected to remain as Prime Minister until his party chooses a new leader. His current term in office would have run until September next year.

There was a surprising fall in German consumer confidence in August. The latest survey by market research organization GfK shows that consumer confidence fell to -1.8 from -0.2 in the previous month. Economists had expected a positive reading.

The New Zealand Stock Exchange failed to open as planned today because of a cyber attack. New Zealand Finance Minister Grant Robertson said that the "government are treating this very seriously”. Exchange operator NZX said the cyber attacks originated overseas.

 

SPORT

Motorsports... The Belgian Grand Prix is taking place this Sunday. Valtteri Bottas was fastest in first practice today, with Lewis Hamilton in second ahead of Red Bull's Max Verstappen. Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll were in fourth and fifth place. In second practice this afternoon Max Verstappen was fastest with Daniel Ricciardo in second and Lewis Hamilton third.

Football... Chelsea have signed Brazil defender Thiago Silva on a one-year deal with the option of an extension. The 35 year old was previously at Paris St-Germain and has joined Chelsea on a free transfer.

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